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Saturday, December 22, 2012 know of such things...

you know of such things
as malice and cruelty
and speak of them daily
amongst yourselves
shaking your heads in dismay
when we think that
it's just the wind slipping
between your boughs
distorting your words
you know of the
seedling's struggle
of the odds against it
growing old and wise
such as yourselves
the forces it must overcome
to reach the sun
defy the sword's sharp edge to
become the earth's sentinel
you know about gales
that topple saplings
cold that splits them
lightning that
cuts them to their quick
disease that renders them
no more than empty shells
pushed them to their limits
sometimes too far
sometimes too soon
you know that it is
not always chance
that evil lives in every
breathing thinking thing
and on a mad whim
strikes out blindly
at anything and everything
never noticing
as its shadow passes
that seed
hiding at your feet




Wednesday, December 19, 2012 have tales to tell...


you have tales to tell
histories locked in your rings
tight and unreachable
but by the sawyer's cut
when the years spill out
as so much sap
and secrets
years of strife
sadness strivings
uncertain ages
and misgivings
lamentations over losses
celebrations of victories
and ages of uncertainty
locked away
in your layers
of bark safe
until the first glint
of metal on flesh
your innards
show us time
compressed into narrow spaces
thin green skins
that knew sunlight
for only a year
before night fell forever
and we count them
run our fingers across them
and marvel that

you were there
when it all happened
and yet said not a word
but were
resigned waiting
for a hand
that bore a pen

Monday, November 19, 2012

Trees...I am back...


...I am back once more among you.
You, never doubting for one moment
and I, never quite as sure
of ever wending my way again
between your sheltering arms.
Wanderer, I, stopping often
to rest among your kind
never overstaying my welcome
fearing another farewell
unmindful that more of you await me
yet clinging to a grasp
that is never wise of me to ease from.
Now we look together
across a great blue eye
that shines in the moonlight
clings to stars ere day is come,
one of you bent and crippled
yet touching the water
as might a young girl
on a late autumn day,
rippling its surface with her hand.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Trees...she said once...


she said once
this woman of no great wisdom
or so I'd always thought
when a young thing
myself who knew everything
and she nothing
that one of you
gray wizened shell
remnant of a greener time
should be left to stand
in contrast to its mates
still young
still new and knowing
that cutting it down
would somehow
spoil the picture

she was right you know
this woman of no schooling
but whose eyes
whose heart
she left me
along with
scribblings in a tattered notebook
something from you

years have passed
since we shared that view
that moment
more since she
screamed me
into this world
that cold March day
the day
I left her forever
farewelling me
as I turned toward you
and now
once more

toward her

Sunday, October 14, 2012 tears...


cloud tears
bathe your leaves
and lacking those
leave your skin dark
stained unimpressive
unsuited to
calendar pages
below which time
passes in numbers
like acorn sprouts
rainy days
are your days of rest
when you are relieved
of trying to impress
of straining against
the dullness of our lives
of trying to outshine
moon sun and stars
of holding us fast
to our dreams
your rings
when bared by the axe
reveal our histories
our journeys past you
through you around you
toppling you in our madness
while you
patient and resilient
stand wordlessly by

Friday, October 12, 2012

Trees...the sun and I...


the sun and I

have an agreement

he will wash your leaves

in gold

when I most need


that you are forever there

forever somewhere

along this journey

and I will

sing his praises

with words


considering his gift

and how it

sometimes blinds me

as it did

on a lonely country road

just now

where dark glasses

weren't enough

impossible to take

it all in

the afterglow

gold dust

against a

curtain of hills

and blue sky

Saturday, October 6, 2012 shimmer...



shimmer in the


shades of

your former selves


lost in the tangle

of what lives still

behind you


long winters

exhanging glances

when snow

built bridges

between you

when spring

sang you

into greenness

your light

lingering past



are on fire now

your immolation


your dirge

the keening

I hear

long into

my nights

Thursday, September 27, 2012 are me...


                             you are me

and I am you

in so many

senses of the words

that I forget


that I am not

like you

bound to a

single spot


to your entrapment

nor are you

like me

able to flee

from danger

the sound of saws

or of tiny jaws

consuming you


or toppling you


where we are

most alike

is in our words

stating simply

that blood

sap sunlight


it's all the same

that without them

we die

we cease to blush

as the light

turns from us

we shed


and bad choices

then wait

till we are

green again

Thursday, September 13, 2012 often...

how often have
I turned to you
as to friends
incapable of
of ridicule
you whose
only fault
is that you speak
so softly at times
that I can't hear
your words of
or am I the one
who isn't listening
closely enough
mistaking your sighs
for the wind
your tears
for dew
your arms about me
to my journey
when you
are all
I've ever been

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Trees....what words to use...


What words to use
to give you substance
on the page,
what amalgam of letters
to best convey your color?

I sit beneath you,
made small
by your untiring presence
and cannot hold a candle
to how you shatter the light
into billions
of gold and fiery bits
that linger but a second
before the sun changes its mind.

And when I leave,
I leave annoyed
that all that come to me
are words like beautiful
and peaceful
when what I want to say
is that I die a little
each time
you wrap

Monday, September 3, 2012

Trees...I long for you...


I long for you
as for a lost lover
the ache that deep
that persistent
that cloying
I was not there
for your passing
for like a lover's death
I could not have
fathomed yours
could not
have answered the
will live with
the void
where you once were
my mind's eye
places me there
where again
I walk among you
only now
it is among shadows
of what once was
when love lived there
I drift
over your remains
rise like an offering
over your tombs
the forgotten things
ferns bracken moss
still trying
so hard
to protect
to comfort
I rise like a bird
high upon a current
gaze down
move my hand
in a slow blessing
across the ruined hillside
offer my caress
my condolence


Saturday, September 1, 2012 do I say...


how do I say
"I'm sorry"

for abandoning you
to another's aesthetic
another's opinion
of your value
in the grand scheme
how to atone
for making your
mass demise
at his hands
I cherished you
and hoped
I'd passed that on
to one whose
seemed as rooted
as you were then
but something
just below
the surface
should have told me
all I needed to know
when I signed
your fates
over to him
who thought you all
do I seek out
others of your kind
in wilder spots
where the chances
of such a one intruding
are slim
where your kind
would uproot themselves
to wage war
against the
against progress
against others
like him
mea culpa
a billion times over
for as many leaves
as have sustained me
or rustlings that
spoke to me
soothed me
moved me forward
through dark places
and whom I ever
I could


Friday, August 31, 2012 little we know...


how little we


of what you do

how few

the thanks

we offer you

as we pass


to the coolness

in your deeper parts

that costs nothing

but is everything

to those of us

who need the

air you clean

the water

to quench

our children's thirst

to banish winter

bring us through


and summer

to that place

of color

as you ease into


as green gives way

to crimson



as your hunger wanes

and you look

toward your

long rest

when your song

will soften

to a whisper


Wednesday, August 29, 2012 that the rain...


                                                                now that the rain
has had its way
with you
and washed you clean
you put the jeweler to shame
with your brilliance
for no emerald
sings the way your leaves sing
no cut glass
splits the light
as do your eyes that have looked
upon us these many years now
stumbling across your roots
where you began
where you continue
what need have we
of anything beyond you
you who though old
are ever young
alive in your transpiration
blessing young ones
springing from
the earth at your feet
your legacy
among the grass
that aspires to your

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Trees...I heard you whisper...


I heard you whisper
last night
amongst yourselves
and early this morning
at daylight
your sighs
mingling with the hiss
of tires
on pavement
whispers that held words
at the space
empty now
where your ancient one
had stood
your breath tremulous
precluding tears
I heard as rain.
You talked too
about who would
take its place
to shelter starlings
during storms
about which of you
would rise to the occasion
before the sun rose
ending the conversation
with no one
the wiser.